Cash Out (2024) Movie Review – Travolta cashes in his cheque on a fun but silly B-movie

Travolta cashes in on another fun but silly B-movie

John Travolta has rarely been off our screens but the quality of his movies has been mixed, to say the least. With the exception of the magical short film The Shepherd, a joyously festive wartime tale that debuted on Disney+ a few months ago, his last few movies have been pretty terrible, with Paradise City and The Fanatic being two of the worst. 

My expectations for Cash Out were pretty low as a consequence, especially as it also had a generic title that wouldn’t look out of place on the front cover of a DVD starring Dolph Lundgren, Michael Jai White, or any other B-movie action star.

Thankfully, this movie isn’t as terrible as I expected as it managed to retain my interest, despite having a threadbare story and plot turns that can best be described as incredulous. 

Travolta stars as Mason Goddard, a professional thief whose criminal alias is the Ace of Spades. He works with a woman (not known as the Queen of Hearts) named Amelia (Kristen Davis) and assorted other crew members who, at the beginning of the movie, help him steal a luxury car. The high-speed police chase that ensues is a highlight of the movie but director Randall Emmett takes his foot off the pedal shortly after when a major twist occurs and the film slows down. 

A few months into the future, Mason is enjoying retirement on the kind of island that you might want to target for your next vacation. However, his peace and quiet is interrupted by his brother Shawn (Lukas Haas) who coaxes him out of his sun and champagne lifestyle to embark on another heist, this one at a city bank where a fortune in cryptocurrency is apparently being held. 

Mason, Shawn, and the rest of their crew head to the bank to carry out the robbery but once inside, their best-laid plan goes wrong when they fall foul of the bank’s security system. A short while later, the police, the FBI, and the military show up, but they become the least of Mason’s concerns when he learns of a mysterious box hidden in one of the vaults that contains the secrets of a dangerous crimelord. This injects proceedings with a little bit of intrigue though this particular aspect of the plotting is skirted over to make room for other story details. 

You shouldn’t come to this movie expecting a heist movie as impressive as  Dog Day Afternoon or even Mad City, another Travolta-flick in which he ends up keeping a building full of people hostage. Cash Out doesn’t have the benefit of a strong script or a seasoned director, but it’s enjoyable enough thanks to a halfway decent performance from Travolta and a fine supporting cast, most notably Haas who, like the rest of his fellow actors, does the best that he can with the occasionally clunky dialogue. 

The direction of Randall Emmett (Midnight in the Switchgrass) is competent enough but there are times when the camerawork is dizzying due to the drone camera that sweeps around the characters like a hyperactive fly (I’m pretty sure one of the actors had to duck to avoid it in one scene of the movie). Some people might enjoy the fast motion of such scenes, but I suspect others might feel a little queasy. 

At just under 90 minutes, Cash Out passes the time pleasurably enough but it’s all rather silly. Major plot points are ignored for conversations about pizza, characters have names like Link and Mr Flowers, and there’s an explosion that takes place that should kill those in its vicinity but which instead leaves them unscathed. As such, you’ll enjoy this film better if you don’t take it too seriously.

Travolta is a better actor than this movie deserves but like many other late-in-the-day actors (Dermot Mulroney, John Cusack, Aaron Eckhart) he seems more content to cash in on movies like Cash Out than star in films better befitting his talents. Or perhaps he and the aforementioned stars don’t get handed decent scripts anymore – who knows? 

But whatever the case might be, this isn’t a bad film provided you set your expectations to low. There are a few fun moments, including a foot chase through the bank, and a music score that raises the adrenaline, even during scenes that are relatively quiet. It would be nice to see Travolta and Haas in a better movie, but as Cash Out 2: High Rollers is their next project, we might be waiting a little while longer to see them in something that returns them to their former glory. 


Read More: Cash Out Ending Explained

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  • Verdict - 5.5/10